Blog Analysis

The Americans press on the mushroom of the crisis

(BRUSSELS2) In the noble fight between freedom on one side, the Euromaidans, and the obscure pro-Russians on the other side, there should be an easy choice in favor of the former against the latter. However, if Russia's game seems quite clear - to neutralize Ukraine to prevent it from swinging too far on the Western side - that of the United States has been little commented on. There will undoubtedly be a before-Ukraine or an after-Ukraine. If it is still too early to trace all the changes due to the Ukrainian-Russian crisis, it seems a certain fact. Stuck between the USA and Russia, NATO and Ukraine, tossed about according to the declarations of each other, Europe has lost its first battle.

NATO finds a new virginity...

We see the Americans - as well as the leadership of NATO - thus pressing on the mushroom of the crisis, not de-escalating but rather escalating, with an objective which seems more the defense of certain interests than that of the defense of Ukraine or Europe. NATO thus regains its virginity and its first virtue: to ensure security in Europe, to be the bulwark against Russia (the USSR yesterday). It finds in the Ukrainian crisis the opportunity to demonstrate its usefulness, to justify an immediate increase in defense budgets, which have been abused lately.

...Americans of new markets

Buying quickly requires buying off the shelf, so generally ... to Americans who thus find, at a lower cost, a political export bonus without difficulty. All past statements about the need for burden sharing, for Europeans to take charge of their own defense (an American antiphon, partly justified) have been written off, according to a new adage: Europeans pay, Americans provide.

A Europe reduced to the position of the fetus

The seriousness of the crisis no longer needs to be demonstrated. And the need to show the muscles may be undoubtedly necessary. But from there to using this crisis to justify a policy in a posture of "pure propaganda" of the best era (Iraq 2003 type), there is a step that AF Rasmussen does not hesitate to take, like General Breedlove, the commander supreme commander of NATO, who is also the commander of US forces in Europe. Their declarations follow one another, could not be more martial. The numbers waltz. They seem so implausible that the declarations, even fallacious of Moscow, do not seem more false. What does it matter... In the middle, silent, Europe is reduced to a minor, infantilizing position. She will be the first political victim of this conflict...

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Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).